How Aussies are eating today - A study in eating habits

Gone are the days when dinners were made up of meat and three veggies. The typical Australian plate has changed so much over the years, with Australian eating habits continuing to evolve.

Here are some of the highlights of the 2016 Ipsos report which delved into the eating habits of Australians.

Sugar awareness

The Australian Diabetes Council says Aussies consume sugar on average of 20 teaspoons a day, or 53 kilograms per year. The report says that although one out of every two adult Australians strongly agree that packaged products have too much sugar in them, less than one out of every 10 adult Australians have actually tried a ‘no sugar’ diet. Plus, only one in four have actually tried to reduce sugar intake.

Snack time

It turns out Aussies love to snack. Two out of three Australians are snacking between meals. Afternoons are usually the favourite time of more than 60 per cent of snackers. While fresh fruit is the snack of choice during the day, Aussies are also eating a lot of baked goodies, pastries, bread, nuts, seed, dried fruit, cheeses and confectionery. Ipsos says that our concern for health is at odds with the enjoyment of snacking, which is leading to the “increase in demand, and consumption of, health snack foods”.

Health aspiration

Australians are worried about obesity. We want to be healthy, we want to do the right thing. But Aussies still believe that healthiness is expensive, that it is time-consuming to achieve. “Although we have plenty of good intentions in terms of shopping and eating healthily, when it comes down to it, our budget has a higher priority in our decision-making in-store than our health aspirations,” the report said. It is basically about easy decisions. Finding the healthy choice is still a challenge for many Aussies despite the introduction of the Health Star Ratings system.

As a side note, Australians love the latest flavour fad, with many eating out at cafes and restaurants. We love experiencing the adventurous side of food consumption. Also, Aussies aren’t into diet fads but instead aim to eat natural foods that are fresh and unprocessed. It would be interesting to see what the changes, if any, will be in the next year or so. So far, it is looking like Aussies are on the right track.

Help fill nutritional gaps in your diet

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